The Kenya Re non-muslim agenda for retakaful is shaping up with the hosting of the second Islamic reinsurance conference.
Targeting growth by wooing non-muslims to Islamic reinsurance, the conference running for two days until Thursday is purposed at addressing and reinforcing the difference between conventional and takaful insurance.
Top on the agenda is how retakaful can be marketed to those who profess different faiths apart from Islam as Kenya Re seeks to grow its portfolio.
Among those attending the two-day event are the President and CEO of International Centre For Education in Islamic Finance (INCEIF) of Malaysia, David Vicary, delegates from both Kenya and overseas markets, CEOs and managing directors of various institutions among them the host institution Kenya Re.
The Kenya Re non-muslim agenda for retakaful is in partnership with INCEIF and Alhuda Centre of Islamic Banking and Economics of Pakistan to host the conference.
“Kenya Re expresses gratitude to both institutions for partnering with us and their role in spreading our vision of entrenching takaful and retakaful in the business landscape in Africa,” said ag. Managing Director, Michael Mbeshi.
Takaful and retakaful are meant to address the insurance needs of Muslims while preserving their religious needs.
The model dates back to 1979 in Sudan before spreading across other African countries among them Egypt, Somalia, Kenya, Nigeria, Tunisia, Algeria, South Africa, Gambia and Mauritania.
Kenya Re started the retakaful journey 10 years ago but appointed a Sharia Supervisory Board (SSB) in 2013. The board was headed by scholars and religious leaders from the Kenyan Muslim Community.
Soon after, the board agreed on the retakaful model and opened a bank account in a takaful compliant bank. It then segregated takaful funds and investments from those of the conventional insurance.
Kenya Re’s retakaful mandate leverages on its tools in the African Reinsurance Industry. It aims at providing world-class Sharia retakaful service to its clients and chosen markets.
It also offers retakaful support for proportional and non-proportional treaties as well as facultative reinsurance in Africa, Middle East and Asia.
According to the Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA), four local companies have applied for licences to set up Islamic-based insurance operations (Takaful).
The regulator said on Tuesday that one of the applicants seeks to offer the services exclusively.
IRA manager in charge of supervision, Kalai Musee, said the other three are exploiting an Islamic window to start their operations.
Musee said there was a delay in issuing Takaful licences due to the rolling out of earlier proposed regulations targeting Islamic-based insurance.
“We have received applications from four firms. We are hopeful that by end of this year we shall have the regulations. They are with the Treasury,” he said.
Kenya is seeking to position itself as a regional Islamic financial hub and the regulations are aimed at guiding the sector’s conduct.
The regulations came after the enactment of the Insurance (Amendment) Act 2016 on January 1, last year.
In Kenya, the Takaful Insurance of Africa is the only Sharia-compliant insurer currently.
The new Takaful law in Kenya is meant to encourage international investments in the sector.